The thermal expansivities (α) of MgO and high‐pressure phases of CaO, CaMgSi2O6, and Fe at ultrahigh pressure are obtained by comparing existing shock compression and temperature measurements to 300 K compression curves constructed from ultrasonic elasticity and static compression data. For MgO, α can be represented by: α = ρoγoCV(ρo/ρ)0.5±0.5/KT where γ is the Grüneisen parameter, CV is the constant volume specific heat, KT is the isothermal bulk modulus, and ρ is the density. Using this expression, the thermal expansivity of MgO is 28‐32×10−6K−1 at the pressure of the top of the lower mantle and 10‐16×10−6K−1 at its base (at 2000 K). New data for α of ε‐Fe, together with an inner core temperature of 6750 K, constrain the density of the inner core to be 5±2% less than the density of ε‐Fe, implying the inner core contains a light element.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)